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of defense is currently spending $10 billion more conducting the war effort in afghanistan this year than was estimated would be necessary. from what we understand, in order to make up for this estimation the department of defense will have to pull from other funds from its base budget, which is difficult because of sequestration and the other long-term spending limits imposed by the budget control act of 2011. the problems with trying to budget and plan for a war a year in advance and how unforeseen costs can arise. at the same time a $10 billion is copulation is a little alarming. -- miss calculation is a little bit alarming. general, can you explain to us how that underestimation occurred? that we insidere u.s. forces in afghanistan under estimated $10 billion for our requirements for this year. i can assure you we have gone back and look at every dollar we have spent to make sure we have spent to good effect. we have significantly reduced the money we are spending in afghanistan. i will go back and take a look at where the projection came from and why we are in the position we are in
defense ministers have already begun consideration of the size and mission for a post-2014 force in afghanistan. one factor that will influence that decision is the size and capacity of the afghan security forces. in this regard, the recent decision by nato defense ministers to support maintaining the afghan security forces at the current 352,000 through 2018, rather than reducing the support to a level of 230,000, as previously planned, is the right thing to do. it sends an important signal of our continued commitment to a safe and secure afghanistan and make it feasible for us to have a smaller u.s. and coalition presence after 2014. the greatest challenge to afghanistan's security is not the taliban, but the pakistan- based sanctuaries for militant extremists, launching cross border attacks into afghanistan. pakistan has said it supports a stable and secure afghanistan. but its actions belie its words. the u.s.-pakistan relationship will not be normalized so long as those extremists safe havens exist on pakistani territory. another large challenge to a stable afghanistan is th
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